Even before its market premiere at the Cannes International Film Festival on Monday 18 May, Finnish-Swedish international sales agency The Yellow Affair has licensed Finnish director Mika Kaurismäki’s drama The Girl King to California’s Wolfe Video for exclusive US distribution on all platforms.
“A captivating story told with exquisite cinematography – Kaurismäki has crafted a historical film that is poignant, current, and strongly appeals to contemporary audiences. We very much look forward to releasing the movie,” said Jim Stephens, president of Wolfe Video.
An updated version of US director Rouben Mamoulian’s Queen Christina (1933), which starred Swedish actress Greta Garbo in the lead, The Girl King stars Swedish actress Malin Buska as Swedish Queen Kristina, alongside an international cast comprising Sarah Gadon, Michael Nyqvist, Lucas Bryant and Laura Birn.
The film is scripted by Canadian playwright Michel Marc Bouchard, who has also written a play about the only surviving child of King Gustav II Adolf; she was queen regnant of Sweden between 1644 and 1654, from the age of 18 to 28, and she sparked a scandal when she abdicated and converted to Catholicism.
Miira Paasilinna, CEO of The Yellow Affair, expects to shortly announce several other major deals for the production, which was staged by Kaurismäki’s own Marianna Films, with Canada’s Triptych Media and Galafilm, Germany’s Starhaus, and Sweden’s Anagram. It will be released later this year.
Also on the company’s Nordic slate at Cannes is Finnish director Dome Karukoski’s comedy The Grump, about a stubborn old man facing the changing world, which sold 458,637 tickets in Finland last year, to become number one in the local charts.
Swedish director Alexandra-Therese Keining has adapted Swedish author Jessica Schiefauer’s award-winning novel The Boys for her Girls Lost, about three bullied teenage girls trying to find themselves in a dark world of violence, marginalisation and sexual confusion.
Finnish director Antti Heikki Pesonen scripted Headfirst himself, a black comedy about a single mother with anger management problems and her teenage daughter, who has been kicked out of school. They are joined by Sakke, an accidental pickpocket and a lousy storyteller.
Finally, Pelé Penguin Comes to Town is a 26 x 7-minute, fully animated children’s series by Swedish directors Kenneth Hedenström, Gustav Forsberg and Fredrik Sandberg, following Pelé and his family as they leave the South Pole for the city where the penguins are sophisticated and tough.